The tradition of the English pub dates back as far as Roman taverns. The Romans established taverns and inns along the Roman road network that became an important part of Anglo-Saxon culture. By the year 1,000, they were so common that they had been restricted to one per village, establishing the idea of the pub being the community center of sorts. The term “pub” comes from the original phrase “public house;” a significant beginning to the hospitality industry of England.
The pub became modernized and remained an enduring staple of English culture through the passage of time. Many celebrity and historical figures of England have been known to frequent pubs. They carry a great amount of tradition with them, as well. Their primary purpose is of course to serve “ale” and other alcoholic beverages, but the pub food of England is a long standing tradition of its own, including menu options such as Shepherd’s pie and fish & chips. The atmosphere of an English pub is also a large part of its tradition, boasting patriotic emblems, historic architecture, song and merriment.
The pub scene of England has become a tourism industry of its own. Many visitors to England want to see the country’s most historic pubs or say they have been on an English “pub crawl,” and there are many tour companies that offer pub tours or base their businesses on them solely. Some have argued that the pub tradition of England contributes to the country’s problem of alcoholism and feel the pub tradition should be more heavily moderated. England is among the countries with the worst alcoholism problems in the world, and its residents are increasingly traveling long distances for alcohol treatment center British Columbia, the United States and Australia. For now, however, pub tourism is booming and continuing to bring ever increasing numbers of tourists to the region.